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What is information hygiene?

We wash our hands before eating, avoid harmful bacteria and try not to overeat. It's all about food hygiene. When consuming information, there is also hygiene. The goal of information hygiene is to reduce or avoid information overload and its harmful effects on our mental, physical and social health. Media immunity becomes a real part of the body's immunity.

The coronavirus pandemic had a significant impact on the information space and was accompanied by such a concept as infodemic. This is the rapid spread of inaccurate and/or false information, or the sending of obscure scientific or medical terms that are difficult to understand. Fakes, manipulation and disinformation are part of the infodemic.

With the advent of new technologies and devices that allow us to track how and from where misinformation spreads, it can be argued that it can lead people to make decisions that make them more vulnerable to disease. This phenomenon is called "misinfodemics". This is the spread of specific diseases or health conditions caused by misinformation online.

After the full-scale invasion of the Russian Federation into Ukraine, the information front erupted with a lot of blatantly false statements aimed at undermining Ukrainian society. Information warfare is an important front on which the unfolding of events on the battlefield directly depends.

A modern person is under the constant influence of information, the amount of which exceeds the ability to assimilate it many times over, and the content of the material is complicated by conscious manipulation. Fakes, playing on emotions, clickable misleading headlines, propaganda narratives - the threat of information dirt can and must be distinguished.

Here are some tips on information hygiene:

  • We choose a clean product. When reading news, it is necessary to focus on proven media, where sources are verified, and materials, contacts, and feedback are open. In the Ukrainian media space, there are enough high-quality mass media where you can choose the necessary direction and editorial policy.

  • Eat when you want. It is necessary to consume information in moderation, not to be oversaturated. Even if it is high-quality, reliable material. The brain needs rest, because our life is constantly connected with being in social media. networks Even passive viewing of the tape can cause restlessness and anxiety, negatively affecting other areas of life.

  • Analysis of consumption. If the information causes strong emotions, or unreliable facts are presented under a headline with a loud name - take care to further verify the information and, if necessary, contact several sources.

We recommend the Information Hygiene course. How to recognize lies in social networks, on the Internet and on television from the "How not to become a vegetable" initiative. In the course you can find out who creates information viruses, how and why; how they manipulate on television, online media, Facebook, YouTube, Google, Telegram, Viber, Wikipedia; how to consume information safely and teach others to do so.

Author: Angelina Zavadetska


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